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A partnership story

Applications for new school partnerships open annually between September and February.

Published: 23 September 2021

The Ogden Trust is currently inviting applications for new school partnerships starting in September 2022. The School Partnerships programme offers five years of funding, support, opportunities and teacher CPD to schools that are committed to working together to enhance physics teaching and learning.

Teacher CPD and raising students’ science capital and career aspirations are at the heart of the programme; partnership funding for enrichment and extra-curricular activities adds another dimension to the teaching and learning of physics, encouraging learners to take physics further.

Last year, Leek Partnership made a successful partnership application bid and are now working in a local cluster partnership with eight other schools. Their central partnership objectives are to work across Key Stages (from EYFS to KS4) to provide a consistent, high-quality experience in physics education, and to raise pupil aspirations to pursue STEM careers. Alongside this they will use the partnership to build a high-quality support network for subject leaders and teachers to up-skill and support staff in the delivery of physics across all Key Stages.

A series of pupil transition events have been planned for their first partnership year, alongside careers activities, a physics at home competition and a KS3 visit to Keele University. Teachers will benefit from CPD and shared moderation to ensure delivery and progression in physics across the partnership schools.

“I had been involved in a school partnership in a previous role,” explains partnership lead Andie Hughes, a teacher at Rushton First School. “I knew that the resources, CPD and support from the regional representatives are all high-quality, and every teacher that I know who has been on an event or training has been engaged and enthused by it.

“Discussions to make a partnership action plan work well to draw subject leaders together and the shared aspirations give a real focus to drive the provision for their students,” continues Andie. “We are a mix of schools covering pre-EYFS to A-level so ensuring transition is effective is a priority, as is creating opportunities to raise aspirations for future STEM careers starting from an early age.

“From a personal perspective, I wanted to study physics to degree level but struggled beyond GCSE,” explains Andie. “Eventually I studied biology at university instead. I have met some brilliant people through The Ogden Trust who have been able to (re-)explain physics concepts simply and demonstrate them effectively. I know that as I learn and make sense of physics, my students also learn, and I don’t want any aspiring future physicists to miss out as I did. Raising teacher confidence in teaching physics leads to raised student confidence.”

Five years of funding

A local cluster partnership can apply for up to £2,500 per academic year for the first three years and up to £1,000 in the fourth year for partnership activities to enhance the teaching and learning of physics. A further grant of up to £250 is available as partnerships move into their legacy phase. In the first year, partnership co-ordinators are awarded a time buy-out giving them half a day a week to build relationships across the cluster and establish the partnership.

An established collaboration partnership (ie a MAT) can apply for up to £2,000 per academic year for the first three years and £1,000 in the fourth year for activities to enhance the teaching and learning of physics. The partnership lead is eligible for up to three years of time buy-out to support the partnership

Teachers at all partnership schools can access CPD from Early Years Foundation Stage through to Key Stage 3. Partnerships work across primary and secondary schools to build links for transition and progression and are part of a supportive wider network of Ogden partnerships, advisers and experts.

Learn more about forming a partnership and how to apply

Partnerships normally comprise four or more schools and can be a mix of maintained schools, academies, free schools and independent schools, across the primary and secondary sector. We welcome applications from any schools in England but are especially keen to work with new partnerships in rural and coastal areas, as well as schools based in areas of social deprivation.

Find out more about our partnership programme and submit your expression of interest now to form a new partnership starting in September 2022.

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